Monday, November 13, 2006

Some Shades and Shapes of Trees

A picture tells a thousand words, so they say. Especially those nature shots, be they of plants, animal/wild life, or clouds (see here), it's up to the beholders to tell the story in their own mind. It could be remembering a place one has been to, or reminiscing where a memorable event has taken place, or simply enjoying the scenery, taken in by the serenity, the blending, and the harmony of it all.

While on any outing, be it shopping, participating in a release of life activity (see here), or sightseeing, I've always remembered, most of the time anyway, to tuck the camera into my pocket for occasions such as those shown here. You will never know what you will manage to capture for eternity, relatively speaking.

What I'm going to do is to group some of these shots into common themes, and blog about them in several installments, not necessarily in sequence, just to mix it up so that there is an element of surprise, hopefully a pleasant one. So for today, it is plants, most of them trees of various shades and shapes. Let's begin.

The first one is a shot of a tree-lined boardwalk along the bank of the Hillsborough River near Tampa Terrace. Especially after a meal, taking a stroll along the water's edge is soothing to both the stressed out mind and the overworked stomach laboring over digestion. Then there are the park benches to rest the tired feet if the owner so inclines.

The next shot is of the gardening plot within my apartment complex. The residents can take up a plot to try out their agricultural exploits, at the same time working off some excess calories attendant to living a rather sedentary life that is office bound from nine to five. And at the end of it all, one still gets to enjoy the fruits of their labor, saving some gorcery money in the process.

I spotted this rather majestic tree next to a store along one of the main roads on a sudden urge to do some shopping. Its rather symmetric spread about the trunk extends in an overhang, providing shades under its foliage when the tree has seen better days, the arrival of the autumn season having deprived it of much of the leafy cover. However, as the wheel of season turns, so will the shedding halt to be followed by renewal, a predictable spurt to greenery.

This is another typical tree lining a rural road that we have traversed on our way to a destination for the release of life activity. It stands by itself, with Spanish moss hanging down from its lower branches. It may cut a lonely figure, but the thick canopy seems to suggest that it is oblivious to the solitude, enjoying the space that those around it are not privy to. At the same time, it is magnanimous enough to support a fellow species, providing both shade and sustenance to an otherwise helpless brethren that would have met with its decomposed end, a rather untimely one.

So much for trees, which are symbols of strength, of staunchness, of protection, of being evergreen, and of renewal. They also inspire the sage saying that it takes a decade to nurture a tree, but a century to nurture a generation.


PL said...

How apt that in the past two weeks my focus is on trees too..I have been making sketches of trees inspired by Osamu Tezuka, the father of Japanese graphic art. On my long drive to work, I watched with amazement the beauty of God's creative design in the shape and color of the branches and leaves and how intricially beautiful is the details of the young buds ... even the decaying autumn leave is a thing of beauty and a favourite object for aspiring artists ...

Say Lee said...

Dear PL,

I recall during our UM days that you did have a penchant for sketching stuff. And I'm glad that stays with you.

From observing my wife doing the sketches so effortlessly, I could sense that engaging in such creative activities is such a liberating and uplifting experience. So keep it up.

If it's not too much to ask, would it be OK for you to scan some of your creative works and email them to me? I want to show them to my wife who will be a better position to appreciate.

A big thank you too for alerting me to the works of Osamu Tezuka. I did not realize that he is such a famous manga artist. And the best part is he has written one on the Buddha, albeit with fictional characters. I will have to figure out the Japanses dialogue though. Many thanks, my friend.

CY said...

I, too, am often caught in wonder at trees. Did you realize that trees are one of the only things (if not the only one) that are beautiful both living and dead?

I uploaded a few pictures of tree stumps, and one of a duck (the point of that one is that even just the silhouette of a bird can be beautiful).

Say Lee said...

Yes, very artistic expression of sombreness, except that one of them was kind of compromised by a man with a kind of haughty expression in defiance of the melancholy. A good contrast though.